Jenn Menendez's West Virginia football chat transcript: 10.4.12
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Jenn Menendez: Alright, thanks for joining me. Let's get started.
The Pressure: How does David Ash compare to Nick Florence? Do you think WVU's D will step up (and match up) and play a better game against Texas?
Jenn Menendez: Word out of Texas is that David Ash has grown up this year. His poise under fire has come a long way and he is a big reasons the Longhorns enter this game at 4-0 as well. I'm as eager of you to see him in action, but I think he will be as impressive as Florence was.
Jenn Menendez: As for the defense.....well it's obviously pretty important they do play a better game. I think they will match up better. Texas likes to run the ball and West Virginia's run defense has actually been pretty good. How well do they play? Will definitely be the difference in this one.
Bige_2: Should we expect another high scoring affair this week?
Jenn Menendez: You know, I've wrestled with this one myself. My instinct tells me no, it will be nowhere near 70-63 on either end. Texas likes to use possession time to its advantage and I don't see WVU getting 90-something snaps. That said, nothing would surprise me about this offense.
Alan Gifford: How's the health of th RB's
Jenn Menendez: Well no real news on Shawne Alston this week and I was as surprised as anybody we didn't see him at all last week. Holgorsen said nothing about him on Tuesday other than they'll see how he plays this week. I asked Dustin Garrison about him, who said Alston practiced on Tuesday and he was pulling for him to make the return. ... I thought we'd see him last week. If he doesn't play this week I'd be even more surprised and would start to wonder if it's really a thigh bruise?
Andrew: Jenn, your thoughts on the one handed grab from J.D. Woods last week that essentially saved the game for the Mountaineers last week?
Jenn Menendez: It was pretty jaw-dropping to say the least. Our view from the press box is so high up that you often can't see the nuances of a play like that - and how special it really was. I was pretty impressed from that vantage point anyway and when I saw the replay I was even more impressed.
G.T. Lynn: Do you think the crowd of more than 100,000 will affect WVU's offense from a noise standpoint?
Jenn Menendez: Interesting question. And I'm sure something they've talked about. As far as I know most of the offense operates using hand signals. I'm not sure though what kind of talking goes on before the snap between the players.. so that will absolutely be something to watch for. Will be crazy noisy there.
TheGhostOfDefensePast: Your game prediction?
Jenn Menendez: Man my score predictions have been pretty off with the exception of having WVU on the right end of them. I'll take another stab though, and my guess 38-35 WVU.
Andrew: I've heard a lot of talk about the Texas corners in the past 2 weeks, but they have a tough task against statistically two of the best receivers in the nation in Stedman Bailey and Tavon Austin...who in your opinion wins that intriguing matchup?
Jenn Menendez: Will be a lot of key one-on-one match-ups this week and I give the edge here to West Virginia. Austin can make players miss, and obviously has incredible speed to his advantage. Bailey too. But going back to an earlier theme ... where this offense has its real advantage is the depth. J.D. Woods will be difficult to contain, heard Mack Brown talk about him a few times this week...
The Pressure: any word on changes to the WVU secondary?
Jenn Menendez: They are clearly on the hot seat, but judging by what CB coach Daron Roberts had to say on Tuesday sounds like the best guys they have are out there. They've been tasked with putting the Baylor game in the rear view mirror. If there are any specific lineup changes the staff has certainly not shared them yet.
TheGhostOfDefensePast: I like dealing in absolutes. Is Geno the best college QB ever & wasn't his game last week near perfection?
Jenn Menendez: Well, that's quite a statement. And as much as I'd like to give you an absolute on Geno being the best college QB ever, I think we need to see his season play out still to proclaim him king of college football. As for last week's game being near perfection: Yes. Absolutely, yes.
Alan Gifford: Is Ryan Clarke injured too
Jenn Menendez: He is, and not sure if he is going to be ready to return. The coaching staff had a lot of praise for Cody Clay who has filled in admirably. Does that mean Clarke is still out that week? Not sure.
Andrew: Jenn, in this week's game being WVU's first Big XII road game ever, what are you looking forward to most when you arrive in Austin, Texas?
Jenn Menendez: I get in tomorrow afternoon so I'm looking forward to seeing what the scene is like 24 hours beforehand. I'm picturing RV's and giant BBQ smokers going through the night. As for gameday, I'm looking forward to seeing how loud the crowd really is. That stadium fits a lot of people, and I'm guessing it will be incredibly loud.
TheGhostOfDefensePast: We need a nickname for the game... Eers & Steers? Trans-Continental Brawl? The hoedown?
Jenn Menendez: I like Eers&Steers. But keep 'em coming.
G.T. Lynn: How much longer do you think WVU can go with Pat Miller and what do you think of Karl Joseph's play so far?
Jenn Menendez: I think WVU goes with Pat Miller as long as it takes to get the younger players up to speed. Karl Joseph has had some very nice games, and has been burned a few times. He certainly has a lot of potential.
TheGhostOfDefensePast: Just for giggles lets compare the excitement around the WVU program to the lethargy ( and apathy) around the Pitt program. Discuss...
Jenn Menendez: I'm not sure it gets more exciting than joining the Big 12, starting 4-0, putting up video game numbers on the scoreboard, and having a Heisman frontrunner leading the team.
Andrew: Jenn, after getting my first look at Texas last weekend I noticed that they have a plethora of running backs to plug into their offense which worries me. Any idea what coach holgorsen might do to slow down the Texas running game?
Jenn Menendez: The Texas run game should worry you. But again, this is the one area the West Virginia defense has been pretty strong. They only gave up something like 2.5 yards a carry to Baylor last week, which of course forced them to throw ball for about a billion yards. How will WVU stop it? good play from the line and linebackers again. This group has been the best part of the defense so far - the LBs in particular.
G.T. Lynn: Pitt needs to win and win big to generate any excitement. Still think Panthers would be better off with stadium on campus, too. Pro teams are tough to compete with.
Jenn Menendez: Agreed. Winning fills stadiums.
Alan Gifford: Texas running back being a major or minor factor
Jenn Menendez: The Texas running game will be a major factor. D.J. Monroe is a name to pay attention to, apparently has incredible speed and power.
Alan Gifford: I meant being out with injury
Jenn Menendez: Oh Malcom Brown? Sounds like he was very important to the run game.
Andrew: Jenn, what does Geno do during practice to improve on his incredible accuracy? Last week's game was as close to perfection as humanly possible, the guy is insanely good!
Jenn Menendez: I think his accuracy is a product of years and years of working on his touch. But you can't forget the mental aspect of throwing the ball like he did against Baylor. His focus and preparation is really what separates him, in my opinion. It leads to his accuracy and incredible efficiency.
Jenn Menendez: Well it's bit after 2:30 and unfortunately need to wrap up. Thank you again for joining me. Should be an exciting couple of days! Feel free to reach out: firstname.lastname@example.org or @JennMenendez
First Published October 4, 2012 3:51 pm